Alumni engagement and philanthropy

CLOSING DATE FOR THE JEAN CRAWFORD COCHRANE SCHOLARSHIP AWARD  Seanna Turner with members of her family at graduation and, inset, Jean Crawford Cochrane

03 February 2020

Applications for the Jean Crawford Cochrane Scholarship Award - for women from Northern Ireland undertaking a degree course at Queen’s - can still be considered, with a reminder that the closing date is this Wednesday, 05 February (4pm).

The Scholarship, which was launched in 2016 to support an undergraduate student over three or four years (depending on the recipient’s degree pathway), is worth approximately £1,500 per annum.

Educated at Trinity College Dublin, Jean (inset above) subsequently lived in Northern Ireland, where she was a member of Queen’s Women Graduates, regularly attending meetings and events. A passionate supporter of women’s education, it was a subject area which Jean pursued throughout her own career – as a teacher, head teacher and representative of the National Association of Head Teachers.

The Scholarship, which was set up in her memory by Frances Grant (née Carpenter) – a close family friend and executrix of Jean Crawford Cochrane’s estate – through a deed of variation of Jean’s will, seeks to encourage women to further their education through an undergraduate degree course at Queen’s. It provides an opportunity which may have been previously unavailable to them, due to financial constraints.

The inaugural recipient, Seanna Turner (pictured above with members of her family at Queen’s last summer), graduated with a degree in Social Work and now hopes to use her qualification to help those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

“I first attended University at the age of 18 when I still lived with my parents. I had no idea of the financial difficulty that would come with returning to University as a 25-year-old mother of two,” said Seanna.

“At times the colossal cost of childcare almost forced me to give up my place on the Social Work degree that I had worked so hard for.

“The support from the Jean Crawford Cochrane Scholarship meant that I had the necessary finances to buy books and other resources to help with my studies.

“Having just graduated, I believe it would not have been possible to reach this point without the support of the Scholarship,” she added.

The University has now opened applications to select the next Jean Crawford Cochrane Scholar. Please click the link to download an application form.

Preference will be given to women normally coming from the post-primary education system in Northern Ireland with a household income of less than £20,000 (approx.), who have been offered a place on the first year of a full-time undergraduate degree course at Queen’s.

Social work is a profession that Seanna always wanted to pursue. Passionate about promoting equality, helping others and empowering socially disadvantaged groups, she was determined that her financial situation would not unfairly dictate her future.

“I believe that everyone should have the same right to education and that social status should not be a barrier to success,” said Seanna.

“I am so proud to be part of Queen’s Women Graduates who share these same values and aim to ensure that everyone has the same chances in life. I can't thank them enough for supporting me through University and helping me achieve a career that will continue to support my family.”

If you are interested in setting up an award like Jean’s through a gift in your will, please contact Queen’s Legacy Manager Susan Wilson, who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

To submit graduate news items, or for general enquiries about this story, please contact Gerry Power, Communications Officer, Development and Alumni Relations Office, Queen's University Belfast or telephone: +44 (0)28 9097 5321.


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